In addition to existing duty-free products, the updated rules of origin will simplify management and reduce compliance costs for operators using the agreement. Austrade can help Australian companies become familiar with local market conditions and help develop export opportunities through a number of market and Australian services. The Singapore-Australia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA), which came into force in July 2003, is a comprehensive agreement that gives Australia deeper and broader results than the World Trade Organization (WTO) in services trade, intellectual property, investment and competition policy. Singapore is one of the world`s most prosperous countries and Australia`s largest trading and investment partner in Southeast Asia. Turnbull`s government has submitted a comprehensive update of Australia`s second oldest free trade agreement, providing significant opportunities for Australian service providers. Today, with my Singaporean counterpart Lim Hng Kiang, I signed an agreement amending the Singapore-Australia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA). This agreement is an important part of Australia`s overall strategic partnership with Singapore. The amended SAFTA builds on the success of the coalition`s free trade agreements with the North Asian economies of China, Japan and Korea. This updated free trade agreement allows Australian service providers to make great profits with increased access and security in areas such as education, law, financial services and professional services. The Singapore-Australia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) was signed on 17 February 2003 and provides for duty-free importation of Singapore products into Australia. Since Singapore is a free port, SAFTA emphasizes the guarantee of liberal access conditions for many Australian service providers such as exporters of legal, financial and educational services. SAFTA will also reduce the administrative burden on investors in Singapore, Australia`s fifth largest source of foreign investment, by harmonizing the Foreign Investment Review Board`s screening thresholds for Singapore with the thresholds agreed under the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement for the Foreign Investment Review Board.
Australia and Singapore will also create a framework under saFTA to support mutual recognition of professional qualifications. Agreements are a priority for engineers and accountants, with Singapore and Australia agreeing to enter into negotiations on mutual recognition agreements. The Turnbull government is pursuing an ambitious trade agenda and more free trade agreements as part of our national economic plan for job creation and economic growth. SAFTA offers a wide range of Australian exporters greater opportunities in goods and services, further strengthens trade and investment relations, eliminates Singapore tariffs and offers Australian companies cheaper inputs for a number of products. October 13, 2016 Hon Steven Ciobo MP, Minister of Trade, Tourism and Investment, and his Singaporean counterpart Lim Hng Kiang, Minister for Trade and Investment, in Canberra, the agreement amending the SAFTA, which formalizes the trade results announced on 6 May 2016 by Prime Minister Turnbull and his Singaporean counterpart, Prime Minister Lee, under the auspices of the Australia-Singapore Comprehensive Strategic Partnership (CSP).